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It feels awful when you find out someone has lied to you. Lies distort the truth and can cause at best inconvenience and at worst wreck your whole life.

We have some distant relatives living in our city. We keep in regular touch with them. Recently, the mother in that family brought her parents to live with her and her husband. In India it is not common for elderly people to live with their daughters, but they couple have no son. So their daughter and son-in-law have taken on this couple in their old age.

For a short while, some very disturbing calls were coming to our home. The old couple are related to my mother-in-law and they regularly called her up and wept and complained about their daughter's tyrannical behaviour. Once they complained that they were forced to stay in a room with no ceiling fan. It was beginning to get really hot at the time and we felt terrible for them. Another time they complained that they were not getting fresh fruits and vegetables to eat as per their wish. The relatives were living in our city and even elsewhere were appalled at the heartlessness of the couple's daughter and son-in-law.

The situation with the old people was checked out and found to be completely otherwise. Yes, their ceiling fan had broken, but their son-in-law had organised an electrician to come in and fix it. The electrician had got a bit delayed and the old people had become irritated. Meanwhile they were asked to move to another room until the fan was fixed. However, they refused as they were not contented to stay in any other room but their own.

As for the fruits and vegetables, it is a sad fact that their is no fruit or vegetable market within walking distance of their home. The house is in a recently constructed housing estate and it will take time to organise all these things. It means that someone has to drive to the nearest market or wait until the fruit and vegetable vendors come around with their carts. One day the vendors never came and the family car was off the road for repairs so their was no fresh fruit or vegetables that day. They were given some dal and rice and rotis to eat, but they didn't understand the difficulties of getting fresh fruit and vegetables that day.

Why did they tell such lies and cause heartbreak to their carers, not to mention disturbance to their relatives? Lack of understanding mainly. They used to live in a very well built up and long established area where everything was available conveniently. They also had very reliable, long standing servants who knew all their ways. It takes a long time to establish such a relationship. They are very well cared for and a servant is available to look after them. They are given their food, medicines and clean clothes every day. But the relationship with their carers must be very strained right now.

I suppose they haven't so much told lies as told the truth as they understand it.


  1. You didn't say how old they are but perhaps their mental facilities are starting to slip.

  2. I am not sure the exaggerations are worse or the spreading of negative gossip.

  3. I think your kind take on the situation says much more about you thn them. Naughty old folks!

  4. Not to worry, all of us will reach that stage in our lives too!


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